Sharjeel offers unconditional apology for role in spot-fixing
The Pakistan Cricket Board met with spot-fixing convict Sharjeel Khan on Monday with the two parties agreeing on the roadmap that paves the way for his comeback to competitive cricket.
Sharjeel apologized for his actions, though not specifically outlining the details, and asked for forgiveness from all his fans for his "irresponsible conduct".
According to the joint statement released by PCB and Sharjeel today, the left-handed opening batsman's suspended sentence is likely to be waived after the completion of his ineligibility period of two-and-a-half years and he can return to top-tier cricket by the end of this year.
“I offer my unconditional apology to the Pakistan Cricket Board, my team-mates, fans and family for the irresponsible conduct that brought embarrassment to everyone.
"I request for forgiveness and assure I will show more responsibility in my future actions," he said.
As part of Sharjeel's rehabilitation, he will be expected to attend and deliver lectures on the PCB Anti-Corruption Code.
The 30-year-old will also engage in social services including visits to orphanage homes in "integration sessions" alongside the Pakistan team players and support staff that eases his re-entry into cricket.
“I remind all cricketers to strictly and religiously follow the PCB Anti-Corruption Code as breaching it will only earn momentary gains but the consequences will be severe and last for rest of the career.
“I have agreed on the future course of action with the PCB, including helping it in its education sessions on anti-corruption," he added.
Sharjeel announced he would not be rushing back to domestic cricket and would be focused on recovering his fitness and batting form after being away from the game for a period of almost 30 months.
“I will soon return to club cricket but will not rush into domestic cricket as I have been away for nearly 30 months and need time to reclaim my fitness and form.”
Sharjeel and his Islamabad United team-mate Khalid Latif were charged by the anti-corruption tribunal of the PCB and found guilty on five counts for breaching the anti-corruption code.
However, he challenged the severity of his ban and continued to maintain his innocence despite the unflinching attitude of the PCB.
The board had recently started showing signs of softening its stance on Sharjeel's ban following the disgraced cricketer's meeting with PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani last year.
Director of PCB Security and Anti-Corruption Lt Col (R) Asif Mahmood said: "We met Sharjeel today in which he showed remorse and regret for his actions. The PCB never takes pride in penalising its players, but it has a non-negotiable and zero-tolerance approach to matters relating to corruption.
“I hope this serves as a reminder to all those who think they can get away with violating rules as the PCB is vigilant and committed to eliminate the menace of corruption from the game," he stated.